To read reports in the mainstream press about the throngs of President Trump’s supporters who rallied in Washington, D.C., over the weekend, you’d think the crowd was made up of a bunch of conspiracy theory-addled rubes and delusional far-right extremists all of them hoodwinked into thinking the election was stolen. To read David Frum’s Twitter take, you’d think they were all Nazis.
The march came on the heels of a poll last week that found a staggering 70 percent of Republicans now say they don’t believe the presidential election was free and fair. That news, like news of the self-described Million MAGA March, was met with a mix of contempt, hysteria, and condescension from Democrats and the media.
Their rough consensus is that GOP voters who still support the president are either treasonous or stupid, reinforced constantly by a brittle insistence that there was “no fraud” in the presidential election. A totemic front-page declaration by the New York Times, “ELECTION OFFICIALS NATIONWIDE FIND NO FRAUD,” has been repeated everywhere, mantra-like. Any claims of voter fraud or ballot-counting irregularities, whether from President Trump or the tens of thousands who marched over the weekend, are “baseless,” “unfounded,” and have “no evidence” behind them.
There’s a palpable nervousness about the media’s insistence that the election was as pure as the driven snow. Maybe they seem so nervous because they know what everyone in America knows: there was nothing pure or secure or even ordinary about the election.